Lost Cities by TheCodingMonkeys icon

Lost Cities ($3.99) by TheCodingMonkeys is a strategy game based on the board game of the same name by Rio Grand Games. Mount your expedition to discover untold treasures in five different lost cities. Be sure to make it to your destination or you’ll lose everything.

Lost Cities by TheCodingMonkeys screenshot

This game is very simple. Players have five sections that are color coded for the lost cities they represent. You have eight cards in your “hand.” To start an expedition, place the lowest number possible card on the board. The lower the starting card, the more you can add to that stack. Once you’ve placed the number 10 card, that expedition is locked.

For example, if you have a red three, a yellow seven and a blue 10 in your hand, you’ll want to play the red three. The other cards are too high and are less likely to yield full points in the stack. If you only have 10s in your hand, you may want to discard instead of playing one on the board.

Each expedition begins with a negative of 20 points. Every card you place on the expedition will generate positive points. If you plan it out properly, your expedition will come out on the plus side. However, if you start with a high number card, or lock out the expedition too early, you won’t earn enough points.

There are joker cards that, when laid down before your first expedition card, will double the points for each card. Be careful though. It also doubles the cost of the expedition from 20 points to 40 points.

You don’t have to play all five expeditions. Sometimes, it is smarter to play with only four stacks. That way, you have less negative points and will get into the positive range faster.

This game can either be played against a computer-generated opponent or with a real-life person through Game Center. Playing against the AI opponent will unlock achievements.

This is a fantastic game. It is even easier to play than the original board game, although the concept is the same. Think of it as a twist on solitaire, only you don’t have to play this game alone. If you enjoy strategy-based games, then pick this one up in the App Store today.